Arctic Update Header
September 26, 2013

The Senate will continue debate on the Continuing Resolution passed by the House of Representatives last week. The House will discuss two minor bills under suspension of the rules.



Arctic helicopter crash details emerge. "Only one of the three men who died in the Arctic crash of a Canadian Coast Guard helicopter was wearing a full immersion suit, which was not completely zipped up, and only one victim had a life jacket on, CBC News chief correspondent Peter Mansbridge reported Wednesday. Sources close to the crash investigation have helped CBC News piece together some of what happened on the helicopter's fateful mission." CBC News 



Opinion: Increasing military presence in the Arctic "is a trend." "Rivalry over Arctic resources is heating up, which includes the five Arctic countries increasing their military activity in the region, Simeon Wezeman, Stockholm International Peace Research Centre told RT." RT 


Arctic quest: The Great Game points north. "Energy and trade have long dominated great power politics. The new 'hot' region for development is in fact one of the coldest: In the Arctic, power means all manner of energy as well as influence in key developing trade routes." RT 


Opinion: Canada is US key to the Arctic. "Despite having little polar territory of its own, the US will use its close ties to Canada to secure a bigger slice of the Arctic's vast natural resources, Michel Chossudovsky, director of the Centre for Research on Globalization, told RT. The battle for the oil and gas riches around the North Pole is heating up, with the eight Arctic Council nations - Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the US - looking for a bigger piece of the pie. But even some countries with no territory in the region, such as China and India, have managed to achieve observer status in the Arctic Council." RT 


Interior gets ball rolling on new Arctic drilling auction. "The Interior Department is taking early steps toward deciding which Arctic waters off Alaska's northern coast to auction in 2016 for oil drilling. On Friday Interior will publish a notice seeking nominations for areas in the Chukchi Sea ahead of a planned Norway Oil Development 2016 lease sale. It's a bureaucratic move in the politically contentious battles over drilling in the Arctic waters, an area oil companies covet and many environmentalists want off-limits." The Hill 


Shell Oil's Arctic drilling operations in limbo. "Six months after federal officials chastised Shell Oil for its faulty offshore drilling operations in the Arctic, the company has yet to explain what safeguards it has put in place or when it plans to resume exploring for oil in the vulnerable region. Shell's 2012 return to offshore Arctic exploration after a generation away was marred by high-profile problems, including hefty fines for polluting the air and a drilling rig that ran aground. The company canceled its 2013 drilling season, and its 2014 operations are in question." LA Times 


Historic sea route opens through Canadian Arctic waters. "For the first time ever, a bulk carrier is using the North West Passage as a transit trade lane, when transporting coal from Vancouver in Canada to Finland. The historic transit is shorter than traditional shipping routes and will not only save time, fuel and CO2, but also increase the load of cargo with 25% compared to the Panama Canal. Nordic Bulk Carriers A/S, the Danish pioneer, is once again behind a new business adventure. The international shipping industry is these days witness to a historic event, when a vessel for the first time ever is sailing from Vancouver in Canada to Finland through Arctic waters. One of the world's few modern ice-class bulk carriers - MV NORDIC ORION - will carry a cargo of 73,500 tons of coal via the so called North West Passage through Arctic waters to Finland. A Danish pioneer in operating ice-classed bulk carriers Nordic Bulk Carriers A/S is behind the historic North West Journey." Maritime Executive 


Icelandic and Russian presidents to meet at Arctic forum. "Icelandic President